The Japanese School Year

For public and private schools, the school year begins in April, which makes winter a popular time for hiring.

Universities begin in late August, so they spend the three or four months prior to that gathering resumes and doing interviews; most make their final hiring decisions in early August.

Listed below are the major holidays in Japan. You can expect to be given vacation time on these days.

  • Second week in April: School begins
  • May 3: Constitution Memorial Day
  • May 5: Children’s Day
  • End of July through the end of August: Summer vacation
  • September 15: Respect-for-the-Aged Day
  • September 23 (or 24): Autumnal Equinox Day
  • October 10: Health-Sports Day
  • November 3: Culture Day
  • November 23: Labor Thanksgiving Day
  • December 23: Emperor’s Birthday
  • December 25 through January 7: Winter vacation
  • January 15: Adults’ Day
  • February 11: National Foundation Day
  • March 21 (or 20): Vernal Equinox Day
  • Third week in March: School ends, and spring vacation begins

Many schools offer classes during vacations, so check with your school before making vacation plans.

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